20 Movie Sequels That Were Better Than The Original
Remember the scene in “Scream 2″, where Randy Meeks (Jamie Kennedy) explains to a class of students the rules of film sequels and what must be done to achieve a perfect sequel? Well, achieving the perfect sequel is no easy task. The art of the follow-up is often less art and more artifice in proving the law of diminishing returns. Most sequels are – lets face it – inferior to their predecessors. However, sometimes, a sequel comes along that is actually an improvement on the original.
A superior sequel not only has the task of staying true to the original story, but it actually has to exceed the original film in almost every aspect. The writer of a sequel has the daunting task to take the same world, same characters, and quite often a continuation of the same storyline, and somehow make everything better and different.
Here we count down 20 movie sequels that improve vastly on their originals…
20. Hellboy 2: The Golden Army
The Sequel: Ron Perlman returns as the Nazi demon gone good, fighting a clockwork army created by elves.
Why It Measures Up: Fresh off art-house fantasy triumph Pan’s Labyrinth, Guillermo Del Toro is towering with confidence as his inner fanboy unleashes a berserk, tongue-in-cheek love letter to creature features.
19. Spider-man 2
The Sequel: Superhero or not, Peter Parker is still a teenager, dealing with teenage angst – romantic complications, a vengeful best friend, a mad scientist with lethal metallic limbs…
Why It Measures Up: Deftly blending hanging plot strands from the first Spider-man with new threats, Sam Raimi proved that X2 was no fluke in Marvel’s ability to ‘do’ a sequel.
18. Superman 2
The Sequel: Remember General Zod, imprisoned by Jor-El at the beginning of Superman: The Movie. Well, now he’s back, which is bad luck for Superman because he’s having serious doubts about being a superhero.
Why It Measures Up: Originally shot by Richard Donner alongside the first film – and subsequently reshot by Richard Lester – the finished film shows none of the behind the scenes tensions. Instead, the mix of directorial approaches creates a satisfyingly rounded blockbuster blend.
17. Star Trek 2: The Wrath Of Khan
The Sequel: A follow-up both to Star Trek: The Motion Picture and also original Trek episode Space Seed, which introduced Ricardo Montalban’s Khan Noonien Singh.
Why It Measures Up: Ironically, by returning to the series’ small-scale roots, this was better cinema than the first film – less bothered by spectacle and more interested in telling a well-paced, exciting yarn.